June 20, 2008

Gov. To Visit Jefferson County

By The Janesville Gazette, Wis.

Jun. 20--MADISON -- Gov. Jim Doyle planned to meet Friday with those affected by floods and storms in Jefferson County.

The county is not one of the 19 that have been declared federal disaster areas. However, it is one of 30 Doyle has designated as in a state of emergency.

The widespread floods that devastated much of southern Wisconsin caused at least $470 million in damage, the state Emergency Management department said Friday. Federal officials have been in Wisconsin this week assessing damage and the cost is expected to rise as they finish compiling their numbers.

Most of the damage -- $203 million -- was done to homes. Agricultural damage is an estimated $147 million, and damage to infrastructure and other public property is about $75 million. Business damage is about $45 million.

People in the 19 counties -- including Rock and Green counties -- have been designated federal disaster areas. Residents and businesses in those areas can apply for federal assistance for things such as home repair and temporary housing costs. Disaster unemployment assistance also is available to people who lost jobs because of the floods and don't qualify for other unemployment benefits.

The counties declared federal disaster areas also include Columbia, Crawford, Dodge, Fond du Lac, Grant, Iowa, Kenosha, Marquette, Milwaukee, Racine, Richland, Sauk, Sheboygan, Vernon, Washington, Waukesha, and Winnebago.

Jefferson County is one of the hardest hit that is not yet on the list. High flood waters from the Rock and Crawfish rivers have led to road and bridge closures. Homes in Fort Atkinson and Jefferson have been flooded.


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Copyright (c) 2008, The Janesville Gazette, Wis.

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